On Barb’s Bookshelf: A Family Rosary Book

complete illuminated rosary

Praying the Rosary with children is not without its challenges. When I was substitute-teaching, the children in the primary grades would frequently lose their places because they would drop their rosaries, or fiddle with the beads (or knots) so much that their fingers would move to a different bead. It was all part of the adventure, I thought, and since I was distracted myself, trying to maintain order and a prayerful atmosphere, I figured there was no way around it.

Jerry Windley-Daoust of Gracewatch Media found a creative — and beautiful — way to solve this problem. The Complete Illuminated Rosary is the coffee-table book of Rosary guides. This book is meant to bring parents and children together to pray the Rosary — no beads necessary.

complete illuminated rosary

This large-format book (it measures 8 1/2 x 11″) offers a page or two per prayer for the entire Rosary. Simply turn the page to progress to the next “bead.” At the beginning of each mystery, there is a short selection from the Gospels that corresponds to that mystery, along with a note at the bottom of the page prompting the prayer leader (parent or older child) to ask for prayer intentions. On each “Hail Mary” page, you’ll find a row of beads depicted at the bottom: one for the first “Hail Mary” in the decade, and so on, in case you do want to follow along on a real Rosary.

“Why is it ‘illuminated’?” a friend asked when she saw this book on my coffee table. This is what makes the book truly unique. Every single “bead” in this book is depicted by a beautiful work of sacred art, from a wide variety of styles. You’ll find work by El Greco, Delacroix, Caravaggio, Frangelico, and Rubens, plus present-day artists Jen Norton, Brother Michael “Mickey” O’Neill McGrath, and Andrei Mironov — among many, many others. An art-credits section at the end of the book explains the source of every painting, drawing, or stained-glass window. The art in the book, all by itself, can lead you to prayer.

Gracewatch Media offers the Illuminated Rosary in three formats: paperback, hardcover, and in separate books for each mystery. Securing the rights to use some art that is not in the public domain, plus publishing in full color in a large format, contribute to the cost of this book (as of this writing, $49.49 on Amazon for the paperback), but this book is a treasury of art dedicated to prayer.


Copyright 2018 Barb Szyszkiewicz
This post contains Amazon affiliate links. I was given a free review copy of this book, but no other compensation. Opinions expressed here are mine alone.

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Small Success: Serenity Edition

Small Success dark blue outline 800x800 Thursdays at CatholicMom.com begin with a look at the past week’s Small Successes! (Don’t you love the new logo? CatholicMom.com has some amazing artists working on these behind the scenes.)

How’s the week going for you?

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Yesterday we took TheKid to his endocrinologist for his 3,000-mile checkup. Despite a wacky few weeks (hello, adolescent growth spurt that kicked off a need for extra insulin) he has a hemoglobin A1C of 5.7. That’s a FANTASTIC number in diabetes land. If he keeps it under 7, his chances of later-in-life complications is drastically reduced.

serenity now-2-

My desk has stayed clean for another week (yay!) but I did add a piece of art. I didn’t intend to keep this on the desk when I bought it, but I do like looking at this picture. The other day when I was frustrated by some computer issues (some on my end, some not) I turned it into a meme.

She looks so calm. Wish I were.

I can’t keep this lovely matted print on my desk forever (it’s standing up thanks to a binder clip) so I’ll have to find someplace else in the house for this. Maybe the kitchen. She looks like a good Kitchen Madonna.

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I learned how to make a handy-dandy FAQ page, where all the questions are on top and when you click on one, you jump to the answer, farther down on the same page. I was ridiculously excited when it worked.

god first family then notre dameI’m looking forward to tonight’s NCAA basketball game: my Fighting Irish are in the Sweet 16! I’m already dressed for the occasion and am claiming the best spot on the couch. Is this T-shirt great or what? I can even wear it to church! Priorities…

Share your Small Successes at CatholicMom.com by joining the linkup in the bottom of today’s post. No blog? List yours in the comments box!

© 2015 Barb Szyszkiewicz
Art: “The Virgin” by Joseph Stella, 1926. My copy purchased from Joslyn Art Museum. Modification mine.